By Mike Leone
(Hartford, OH)…Sharon Speedway will look to complete the fourth straight night of racing this Saturday night (August 14) as the 92nd anniversary begins to wind down. The “Super Series” event will feature the Hovis Auto & Truck Supply “410” Sprint Cars racing for $3,000 to-win and the Gibson Insurance Agency Pro Stocks for $1,000 to-win along with the non-wing Terry Bowser Excavating RUSH Sprint Cars and the HTMA/Precise Racing Products RUSH Sportsman Modifieds. Race time is 7 p.m.
Sharon has hosted nine successful “410” Sprint Car events with nine different winners in 2021! Will there be a 10h different Hovis Auto & Truck Supply “410” Sprint Car winner on Saturday night? A lot of local talent are still searching for their first wins so another new winner is not out of the question. Not only has there been nine different winners, but six of those racers have captured their first career Sharon wins!
Justin Peck won the May 1 All Star show for his first career Sharon triumph. George Hobaugh returned to victory lane on May 15 nearly three years after his first career Sprint win. Dave Blaney thrilled the hometown capacity crowd on May 22 winning his first World of Outlaws show in 24 years. Invader Ryan Smith won the Western PA Speedweek show over a 38-car field on June 5. Central Pa. star Danny Dietrich captured his first career Sharon and Ohio Speedweek victory over a huge 53-car field in the All Star-sanctioned event on June 15. Dale Blaney made a winning 2021 debut on June 26 driving Rich Farmer’s #29 to victory. Spencer Bayston became the latest new “Lou Blaney Memorial” winner for the All Star show on July 10. And most recently, local standouts Adam Kekich (July 24) and Carl Bowser (August 7) finally got the monkey off for their backs at Sharon with their first wins.
After a week off, the Gibson Insurance Agency Pro Stocks return and the ante has been upped to $1,000 to-win regardless of the car count thanks to Curt J. Bish/Tarr Motorsports and Matt Bernard! Coleton Longwell captured his first career Sharon victory the last time out on July 31 as he became the fourth different winner in five races. Still, 2019 champion Bish is the only repeat winner, but hasn’t won since May 15. Chris Schneider earned the $10,000 “Steel Valley Nationals” win two months ago, and 2018 champion Chris McGuire is the division’s other winner. Bish has a 10-point lead on McGuire. Veteran Larry Kugel is hanging tough in third, but 2016 and 2017 champ Paul Davis and Longwell are just four points back. Two years ago nearly to the day, Davis, a 23-time winner, ended a two-year plus winless drought, and will look to do that again on Saturday night.
The Terry Bowser Excavating RUSH Sprint Cars are back for their seventh show of 2021. The fourth year division has show a growth in cars with 29 of them participating thus far with an average of more than 20 per show this season at Sharon. Chad Ruhlman, the division’s all-time winner and two-time champion, has two victories this year at Sharon including an impressive charge from 20th at the last show on July 31. Ruhlman leads the $5,000 to-win RUSH Weekly Series points by just 11 over Gale Ruth, Jr., who has five wins around the circuit, but none at Sharon. RUSH’s 2020 “Futures Cup” Champion, Nolan Groves, also has two wins, while 62-year-old Rod George has a win. Former RUSH Sportsman Modified “Futures Cup” Champion, Blaze Myers, has been one of the most consistent racers in his first year of Sprint Car racing. Myers is third in the Weekly Series points and has been knocking on the door at a victory.
The HTMA/Precise Racing Products RUSH Sportsman Modifieds are back for their fourth straight week of competition. Clayton Deems became a first time winner last Saturday night joining Jacob Wolfe, who did the same back on June 26. Chas Wolbert leads the way with three wins, while Garrett Krummert, who has won in two of his three starts, is the only other repeat winner.
Drivers will not only be battling for Sharon points, but also the $3,500 to-win Hovis Auto & Truck Supply RUSH Weekly Series and the $1,000 to-win Wedge Motorsports “Route 7 Rumble” Series Championship. Wolbert, who leads RUSH’s Weekly Series standings, has a commanding 69-point lead over Tony Tatgenhorst in the Sharon standings. Just 10 points then separates second through seventh in points with Rob Kristyak, Kole Holden, Justin Shea, Ben Easler, and Wolfe in pursuit. Holden leads the “Route 7 Rumble” points, which are cumulative between all races at Sharon and Raceway 7, by 14 over Brandon Ritchey.
There is no Sharon registration fee for any division. One-way driver radios are mandatory; channel 454.000. AMB/MyLaps transponders are required; rentals available for $25. If you have yet to register for the 2021 season, please bring the registration form with you completed http://www.sharonspeedway.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/RegistrationFormSharon2021.pdf
Fans can not only experience viewing from the frontstretch and backstretch grandstands, but also from the infield fan zone. The fan zone, which includes a concessions and restrooms, debuted in 2020 during the COVID-19 shortened season. Sharon is the only track in the area to have viewing from the unique infield perspective. There will be times throughout the night when fans can cross on the frontstretch back and forth.
The pits will be open throughout the afternoon with passes going on sale at 4 p.m., while general admission opens at 5. Pill draw for the “410” Sprints will close at 6 p.m. with the other divisions at 6:15. Motor heat for the Sprints will be at 6:15 p.m. followed by group qualifying for the “410s” at 6:30. Heat races will begin at 7 p.m.
Grandstand/fan zone admission for those 14 and over is $15. Patio seating upgrades are just $5 and fan suite seating upgrades are just $20 over the cost of general admission. These can be upgraded on race night at the track office. As always, children under 14 and parking are always FREE. Pit passes are $30. As a reminder, coolers nor outside food or beverages are not permitted.
Coming up next Saturday (August 21) will be the World of Outlaws Late Models racing for $10,000 to-win plus the Whelen Econo Mods. Advance tickets are on sale for reserved, general admission, patio, and fan suite tickets at the following link http://www.sharonspeedway.com/fans/tickets/.
Sharon Speedway is owned by the Blaney, Weller, and Kirila Families and is a 3/8-mile dirt track located on Custer-Orangeville Road in Hartford, Ohio near the intersection of Routes 7 & 305. For more information, check out the website at www.sharonspeedway.com or call 330-772-5481. Like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/sharonspeedway and follow us on Twitter @sharonspdwy.